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tv   [untitled]    July 2, 2012 8:30am-9:00am PDT

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did set out to check, and the report clearly shows at the time she bought the building, the seller gave her a report that clearly showed it was a two-unit building. she may not have understood that, but the problem is by not filing a building permit or at least getting a set of plans, the discussion of whether she could even approve this with the planning department cannot go for it because that process has not been initiated. so i will tell you that it is very rare to have one of these cases go all the way up to appeal and had an owner never file even a permit. had a permit been filed, we probably would not have gone forward with the hearing because we would have allowed the process to go through so that that could be analyzed. she talked about a couple of things -- smoke detectors -- from the way she described those, she was talking about battery smoke detectors. as a four-unit or two additional
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occupancy, she would need hard wired units. these are the types of things that when you go from a two- family dwellings to four-and a building, these other types of things that are not there. as the senior inspector indicated, we do not have building permits or electrical plumbing permits for all the work that was done to create these units. although i think she should be commended for getting a permit to deal with the dry rot, why not get a permit to start this discussion and explore this? even with the set of plans, she will have a lot more information. she will sit down with that. we could have a set of plans. she could talk to the planning department. without that, you really cannot go forward to be able to give her more advice. we have taken photos. those are in your report, but these are some of the things that even if illegal units were legalized, we would still need this information. we would need a set of plans. we would need a permit to correct the record or whatever.
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that is what we would recommend that she do so that we can explore this even further. commissioner walker: this has been an issue that we have dealt with and several supervisors in the past have tried to deal with. it is a third rail, and we have yet to put something forward as far as a discussion about legalizing because of soi am alo displaced tenants. we do not go out of our way to find these buildings, and many of us know where they are. and the inspector going around -- they are easy to see. we do not go after them. in this case, it has been a history of tenant complaints, and that is the thing that really concerns me. up to and including losing
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power, losing the ability to keep, and withholding security deposits. those are all things that make it less -- i am less sensitive in those areas and less compassionate because i think that it feels like not only are the illegal units, but tenants are being taken advantage of. i appreciate that this is a challenging situation. this has been happening since 2008, and there is no movement. i do not think there is any excuse for it. >> could we hear every bottle and maybe then public,? >> three-minute rebuttal. >> none of the current tenants are complaining, and there has not been a loss of power.
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i have very high wattage light bulbs, and they are left over from the last owner, who lived in this illegal units, by the way. the guy who sold me the building. that is where he lived. it took me a while to realize that that is why the pieces were falling, and a swap them out and never had a problem with the power. that was at least six years ago. people complain as they are leaving because they spilled something on the rug, and i ask them to either fix it or pay for it, and they do not want to. they look for a weakness in me, and this is a really, really obvious weakness at this point because it snowballed. anybody can look now. it is too? of a mouse away, and you can see i have a record. if anybody is trying to take advantage of me, it is very easy for them to do, and i can tell you it is totally irrelevant to the condition of
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these units. i wish i had these people here. i know this is a he said/she said, but they are very good at manipulating and convincing people that they are the ones being victimized, but nothing could be further from the truth. the people who have called and complain have either been on their way out, mad about having to make legal deductions in their security deposit to fix damage they did to the unit, or the people upstairs who just were on a vendetta against me and were looking for any possible means of traction. and they found a really good one with these illegal units, and they did not even live there. and they were bending over backwards to find ways in their luxury $4,000 a month we'll apartment upstairs that they could get me in trouble for something that had nothing to do with them. so i am really sorry if i give
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that impression. i am an extremely conscientious landlord. taking advantage of tenants is the last thing on our i would want to do. i go into the red every single month on the money you're sorry spending on my building. i have owned it for nine years and never once made a profit. every dime i take from these people in red eye plow right back into the building in the shape of improvements, and it is a gorgeous property. i am proud to live here and proud to own it, and i really wish that this issue was not hanging over my head like this. it has literally driven me crazy. i will do whatever. i'll get the permits. i will get the plans. i cannot afford it right now, but if there is a step i can take to deflect this, i'll gladly do it. i am irresponsible person. i am trying to be responsible. i am sorry i have people at to get me or whatever.
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>> i do have a witness. commissioner clinch: do we have any public,? -- any public comment? >> good morning. i am a tenant at the property. i have been there for six years. i do want to say in regards to the he said/she said, i am very sympathetic with my landlady because she is telling the truth. there were people who moved out and did serious damage to the floors. it went through small claims and it would actually up in a higher court, and ms. roberts won that, and those people were very upset. she uses the security deposit for its intended use, which was to repair the floors that they damage. i can attest to that.
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i took the photos of the damage done. so i am very aware of all that. commissioner walker, the person who called you has called someone in practically every department in the city. it is not because of ms. roberts' behavior. it is because the person has nothing better to do. person call and complain that i had beaten him on the premises. i am a lifelong, nonviolent quaker. it is ridiculous. when the same person called and said she was drunk and disorderly, the police showed up and could see she was not. this is the person you are dealing with. this is where it is coming from -- a vindictive tenant.
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he basically looked up everyone who ever had a complaint and then came up with this whole narrative. "she takes the money away." this is the nicest place i have lived in san francisco. the illegal units on the ground floor -- they have been there a while. there is nothing wrong with them. there is no danger there as far as i can tell, and i have been there. i am not an expert. i am not a contractor. i am not an inspector, but every time she has found that something is wrong, she works to fix it. >> are you in the upper two units or the basement? this alleged attended making the complaint, -- the alleged intended making the complaint, i the still there? >> no, they are gone.
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one had a job, and the other stayed home and made phone calls on end. >> i had a question if that is okay. what is the cost of pulling the permit to get moving in a diffe? >> was the first part of your question? >> costs. >> it depends upon what the property owner wishes to do and perhaps deputy director sweeney might want to address that further. >> the fees are based on the amount of the permit itself. if staff ascertains that the cost of legalizing the unit -- if the cost of construction was $50,000, $75,000, $100,000, it would be in, on ms. roberts to file a building permit -- it
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would be incumbent on ms. roberts to file a building permit, and based on the price would be the permit. >> in this case, she would have to go to planning first, right? >> she would put it in the building department, and we would reroute to planning. >> question on that regard -- can you have an r1 building in that neighborhood? >> that is something for planning. building does not weigh in on this. >> again, if the zoning would not permit the legalization of four units, maybe it would permit the legalization of three, or establishing a floor of occupancy, where she could have individuals who are boarders. i believe the last individual is an occupant in the unit. she could maybe have that as an
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opportunity. >> any other questions, commissioners? any other public,? -- any other public comment? commissioner walker: this has been going on since 2008. i would prefer that this go through the process of legalizing what could happen, but i believe that the order of of bateman as appropriate, so i would tend to put the order of abatement and did a per -- give a period of time to complete that to either legalize them or get rid of them. i would also like to deal with the tenants that continue to get moved around by this. if there is a notice of
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violation on these units, there should not be people of them. they should not continue to rent them. -- there should not be people in them. i would like to make a motion that we uphold the order o a few months to go through the process, whatever seems reasonable to the deputy director. >> perhaps something as much as six months, given the complexity of the process? >> yes, but i pulled the order of abatement. >> if i could, maybe we could give her 30 days to fill out a permit application with plans for 60 days, and then she can have four years to think about it. perhaps six months to get plan approval. it is up to you, but i would shorten the time frame. >> excuse me -- you mean 30 days
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to file a permit and six months to submit the plans?
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>> the plans have to come with the permit. >> that is what i thought you said. my feeling -- i do not think 30 days will be sufficient enough to get plans for this. i do not even think 60 days. but let's get back to this -- i understand the situation. i am sorry you are in the situation. this two things wrong that our inspectors found.
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he said/she said, but there seems to be a number of people
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who had the same complaint about the issues that are brought up. at this point, i want to do what i can to move this forward if there is an incentive to make sure that the permit is filed and maybe the reduction goes to that. zsoqo/áymw3çç>> the life safe. all the abatement repairs need to be made within 60 days. we give
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somewhere in there we assess the cost. >> i would like to say three months to get the permit for legalizing. not six months. if there is a delay in planning. >> i do not know if it is reasonable to me to put a time line on something this property owner has no control over, which is planning. >> it would just be a permit application. nine months for the completion. or six months. three months and planning.
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>> just to clarify, if we uphold the department's decision, we are giving 60 days to correct the life safety decision, and then the six months to get the permits and to planning. -- into planning. >> which means she would have to get the actual plan. she has to get a contractor draw up the plan, which is a good $6,000 cost, right? i am not sure that three months -- i will defer to other folks. the other choice -- what is the other process? >> you would knowingly have individuals occupying to illegal
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units with no building permit, so if anything were to happen it would be not only on staff, but unfortunately on the commission. can i make a recommendation that if you require the property owner to file the bibuilding permit within three months and respond to a plan checking inquiry by the planning department within that time, so more than just filing a permit and not responding. if she does that within the three months, you can get the incentive of reducing the assessment and cost required to that date by 325%, which would then help recover some of the cost she is going to need for the plans. then, as soon as she gets a permit, because as he was alluding to, there could be something out of her control, once that goes through the process, then she has to
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diligently go through the process to legalize or remove or create a floor of occupancy or whatever it is, and she needs to respond to any request for additional plans or information from both dbi and the planning department. that could be written into the decision as well. she would then have to get that permit an process started within three months, because she has people occupying the space. >> thank you. >> i would just like to concur with the last recommendation of some of the clarification to the staff gave. actually looking at bthis case, to me, it is not that rare. it seems contentious, but everything that comes before the
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abatement appeals board either comes from a tenant, or most likely from a neighbor. here is the problem we have, we do not care who rats you out. we do not care if they are crazy or not. all we care is the inspector goes in, they look at what the building is, and a look at the code. it is their job to enforce that. it is the same thing about what you call a cop. they do not care if the crazy neighbor calls them. they did not care about the crazy family. they have to go in and assess the situation of what is going on here. so i think that is why i am compelled to go with the staff and uphold the law, the order of abatement, because that is what we're here for. in every case since i have been
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here, it was some neighbor. we cannot do anything about that. we do not know how people get along with their neighbors. that is none of our business. i>> if i get this on my building, it will be very expensive. i cannot go to the bank and get money, because it affects my credit, and i cannot get a home equity line. it is really burning the candle at both ends. >> the abatement will be held in the vaguenebayness. it will be held on your title unless you are not doing what you're supposed to do. we will uphold the abatement and hold it with the requirement that you fix the health safety issues in 60 days and file a permit for the planning issues within three months, and maybe a
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year to resolve the situation. it seems like there is a problem, we can modify the time if nothing else. to g > i think we're moving vy close to an agreement on the commission, and six months is more fair. some feel that three is more appropriate. >> can we go with the difference? [laughter] >> we want to be fair about this. six months. i understand concerns. we look at the fire exiting issues. that is going to take more than three. >> the attorney said it